Bass Webb found guilty of two counts of attempted murder

jkegley@herald-leader and kward1@herald-leader.comMay 18, 2011 

Bass Webb was found guilty Tuesday evening of two counts of attempted murder for trying to run down a pretrial officer and a deputy sheriff outside the Bourbon County jail in 2009.

Police said Webb was driving a Geo Tracker when he tried to run down pretrial officer Josh Mason and Deputy Sheriff Ryan Barkley, who were standing outside the jail's secure garage where police unload prisoners, according to testimony given Monday.

Mason was able to get out of the way, but Barkley's leg was pinned between the vehicle and a jail wall. Webb then sped off, and police arrested him four miles away when his Tracker caught fire.

The jury deliberated for about three hours before finding Webb guilty. The jury recommended a sentence of 25 years for each conviction.

Several witnesses took the stand Tuesday, including former Bourbon County deputy jailer John D. Hansen, who chased Webb after he fled, pulled him out of the smoking vehicle and handcuffed him until police arrived.

Hansen said Webb said "I'm going to kill you" as he wrestled him to the ground.

Webb then told police he had killed his ex-girlfriend in Cynthiana. State police later found the body of Bryia Runiewicz, 32, in a home on New Lair Road.

Webb also is accused of killing former girlfriend Sabrina Marie Vaughn in Montgomery County.

Webb has been charged with both murders, but those were not at issue this week.

Webb gained notoriety after spitting on Bourbon District Judge Vanessa Dickson during a hearing in August 2009; he also has been accused of spitting on a Fayette County jail officer. He was convicted of assault for an incident in which he ripped a phone from the wall and threw it at a jail officer.

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